Black carpenter ants are omnivorous. In addition to eating meats and greases, they like to eat fruits, plant juices, and common sweets.
Ants will eat a huge array of foods, and plants are included. They tend to gravitate toward sweet plants, such as fruits, though some plants, such as spearmint and sage, repel ants. They may also eat a plant in the course of eating the aphids that are on the plant. Anything containing the compound trans-2-nonenal, such as cucumber, will repel ants as well.
For the most part, ants will eat all sorts of foods, including plants. They are omnivores, eating vegetable matter and animal matter, including other ants. Sometimes ants that are attracted to a plant is actually there for a different reason. Some ants farm aphids (which do eat the plant) and eat of their sweet fluid excretions (mmm). Carpenter ants do not actually consume wood, they only carve away at it to live in. Leaf cutter ants grow a fungi that they live on, and the leaves they carry is ingested by fungi, which the ants then eat.
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